Honor thy administrative professional

filesToday is Administrative Professionals Day in the United States. (Note to bosses: here are some last-minute gift ideas.) Even though this is not a national holiday, and some folks think it’s just another contrivance of the greeting card and florist cartels, it still doesn’t hurt to take some time today to thank the secretaries, administrative assistants and clerical staff who help us do our jobs.

In the world of higher ed marketing, administrative professionals play an important role. They’re typically the ones tagged to update departmental website. They’re asked to cajole faculty for updates for the departmental newsletter. They draft news releases for distribution, arrange interview requests, lay out newsletters and brochures. And they do all of this with little to no formal training.

They may occasionally frustrate those of us who earn our pay in marketing, branding, PR and the like. But we should consider all they’re up against on a daily basis. They’re trying to manage the calendars of overextended deans and department chairs, they’re helping students, dealing with parents, hopefully diverting calls to the president from the producers of “In View With Larry King,” and a hundred other tasks I can’t begin to imagine.

They are essential to helping us. They are also some of our most knowledgeable and effective brand ambassadors. Let’s not take them for granted.

I hope you’ll take a moment today to thank those administrative professionals you work with day in and day out.

Image: “My Filing Cabinet” by Artform Canada via Flickr.

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Author: andrewcareaga

Higher ed PR and marketing guy. Communications director for Missouri University of Science and Technology (Missouri S&T) in Rolla, Missouri, USA. Slow runner, mediocre guitarist, lover of music and puns, and an avid St. Louis Cardinals fan. I blog and Tweet about #highered, #music, #gocards and #random stuff.

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